Forest Schools Liverpool

Forest School in Liverpool

Enabling inner city children and adults to connect with nature and grow in confidence.

Emma Ackerley

After the success in Manchester, we have expanded our Forest Schools project over into Liverpool.

Forest School enables children to explore, learn and play in a safe and supportive natural environment. It is a unique opportunity for children to develop teamwork skills, improve confidence and initiate their own learning outside of a classroom. Our vision is for a growing movement of primary schools across our region that are passionate about Forest School and the benefits it offers to learners

Thanks to the generous support the players of People’s Postcode Lottery have given us, we have been able to deliver our Forest School project in Liverpool since 2017. Over a calendar year, we offer a select number of educational facilities across Liverpool free Forest School sessions with one of our trained Forest School Leaders. During that year, we train up to three staff from each facility as Level 3 Forest School Leaders too, so that the staff can continue to deliver Forest School sessions to pupils after we move on, embedding Forest School into each setting's ethos.

Forest School Project logo

Working with local partners

In our first year, we’ve worked with local schools across the city to deliver sessions at two sites – Everton Park Nature Garden and Springfield Park, with the help of partners such as Friends of Everton Park and Alder Hey Children’s Hospital.

On the 5th July 2017 we officially launched our Liverpool Forest School Project at an event at Everton Park Nature Garden, in which everybody involved in the project came down for a taster session and a carousel of Forest School activities throughout the afternoon.

Here is Gideon Ben-Tovim OBE, Chair of Nature Connected and Environmental Adviser to the Mayor of Liverpool City Region, explaining what he thinks about Forest School...

Film Credit: Scott Anderson

In 2018, we worked with schools in other parts of the city, such as Bootle and Netherton, improving their school grounds to make them more suitable for Forest School. We have continued to work on our purpose-built outdoor classrooms in Springfield Park and Everton Park Nature Garden too.

We also worked with schools with dedicated classes for children with Special Educational Needs (SEN), a first for the project, enabling us to showcase the inclusiveness of Forest School and offer children with a variety of needs to experience the benefits of nature and build in confidence. Our video below shows how Millstead Special Needs Primary School in Everton have embraced Forest School and the success we've had working with SEN children.

Oropendola Productions Ltd

We find that the children learn better doing things that they enjoy, so at Forest School we’re getting loads of interaction and language out of them because they’re relaxed and in an environment that they like.
Rachael Sharpe
Millstead Special Needs Primary School, Everton
The loose structure of the sessions gave us as adults the opportunity to draw the children's attention to all the sensory joys and wonders of the outdoors that often get lost in the busy-ness of daily suburban life and, in the process, to reconnect with the same joy ourselves.
Lesley Bower
Grandparent helper, Knotty Ash Primary School

Using Forest School as a form of therapy

In 2019, we branched out from working with schools and developed a new and innovative partnership with Alder Hey Children’s Hospital’s Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) to pilot a new way of working with children and young people who access the hospital’s Mental Health Services. Staff at CAMHS thought that the Forest School approach may work for those who might not fit or use traditional therapy models, and so were keen to explore how Forest School might fit into their service.

Two therapists from the CAMHS team were trained as Forest School Leaders, and together with a Forest School Officer from LWT, ran a pilot programme with young people from the CAMHS service, using the woods in Springfield Park, right next to the newly built Alder Hey Children’s Hospital. 

Watch our short video and read the testimonials to discover how young children have benefited from this programme.

When I go to Forest School I learn new things and play with my new friend and I also have fun by building dens, putting up a tarpaulin and making things.
The adults in Forest School are very friendly and helpful and always make it lots of fun. I have learned so much in the outdoors and I have learned many skills that I can use in the future. I think Forest School can be for other children too as it will teach them that it's fun in the outdoors and you can make fun things with fun ideas. You can give your creative ideas to anyone and they won't doubt them.
Forest School Participant
CAMHS

Hidden World Productions Ltd

Forest School at Alder Hey is the best thing that could have been available for my 10 year old daughter. My daughter has ASD [Autism Spectrum Disorder] and finds it difficult to make new friends and with her social skills. Since she has attended Forest School, her mood has changed, she has made new friends, she has a smile on her face when we talk about Forest School, her enthusiasm when she knows its almost Friday is a joy to see. She has grown in confidence, she has learned so many new skills and absolutely loves it. Seeing my daughter so positive about this, brings me so much joy and the teachers at forest school are amazing too, they really help the kids channel their inner Bear Grylls… I hope that such an amazing service can continue in the future to give children who have difficulty in expressing how they feel a chance to benefit from something so positive.
Parent of participant

Supported by players of People's Postcode Lottery

players of postcode lottery logo

The Lancashire Wildlife Trust has been working with players of People’s Postcode Lottery since March 2015 to bring Forest Schools outdoor education to inner city school children.

People’s Postcode Lottery is a charity lottery that emphasises supporting good causes in the heart of players’ communities, fitting perfectly with The Wildlife Trusts’ emphasis on protecting wildlife where our members live.

Learn about People's Postcode Lottery and the amazing support players provide to The Wildlife Trust on the dedicated section of our website here.

Find out more

For more information about our Forest Schools in Liverpool, supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery please contact Katie Dearden, Senior Forest School Officer, at kdearden@lancswt.org.uk.

To discover more about Forest School and our services click here.

Explore our Manchester Forest School project here.

To find out more about our School Grounds service click here.

Latest News

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